- They have front loading doors
- They have a muffle/fiber lining
- They don't fire any higher than 2000 degrees F.
- They are much lighter
- They heat up faster
- They are nice for doing raku because of the front loading door
- They are easy to take with you for teaching classes or traveling
- They don't have much dust
- They are great for fusing glass, metal clay, and enamel
- If the elements go out it is much more expensive to repair a muffle/fiber kiln than a brick lined kiln
As you can see in the photo above, which is my SC3, I am using it to fire a load of beads for raku. I have used a metal bead rack so that I can easily pull out all the beads at once from the hot kiln and then drop them into the can with straw for the reduction firing. . Afterwards, I put the hot rack into cold water which further enhances the glazes.
If you look closely at the open door on the left you can see where I put insulating material to protect the window. You also get a good look at the muffle type of lining these kilns have.
Here is a side shot of my Paragon SC3. You can see that the door has a sturdy hinge and opens up 180 degrees. I got the taller version so I could make a bigger bead rack for it for the raku firings. I have done quite a few in it without any problems. Again you can see that I have protected the window with fiberglass insulation.
Here are the Specs on the SC series of Kilns from Paragon
Kiln Model Volts Temp. °F Opening Depth Feet Weight W. x D. x H. Amps Watts Config.
SC-1, SC-2 & SC-3 2010 SPECIFICATIONS
SC-1 120 2000° 6”W x 3”H 3 ¾” .04 15 11” x 10” x 12 ¼” 5 600 5-15R
SC-2 120 2000° 8”W x 5 ¾” H 7 ¾” .19 36 13 ¼” x 14” x 15 ½” 12 1,440 5-15R
SC-3 120 2000° 7 ¾”W x 7 ¾” H 8” .28 41 13 ¼” x 14” x 17” 15 1,800 5-15R
Whole Lotta Whimsy has a great chart that compares a number of small kilns and gives you pros and cons for most of them. It also gives you a lot of important firing tips.
A couple of places where you can purchase the Paragon SC 3 series kilns are Whole Lotta Whimsy and Big Ceramic Store
We love to hear from you. Tell us your small kiln experience. Many readers and folks new to ceramic bead making will be coming back to these kiln posts to try and figure out which kiln would be best for them. Your comments will be so helpful to them. Many thanks for stopping by.